Coffee Brewing Methods in Third Wave Coffee Shops 101

siphon coffee brewing

Candid Cuisine’s Guide to Coffee Brewing Methods in Third Wave Coffee Shops

Eons ago, coffee was all about efficiency and readily available sachets. Jolts of caffeine to jumpstart mornings was enough for one to get by. In today’s specialty coffee industry, or commonly known as “Third Wave” coffee trend, consciousness reigns and quality is scrutinised by consumers. People have become more appreciative of what happens behind the scenes and not just to drink. Patience is key to a perfectly brewed drink.

Getting a cup of coffee at Third Wave Coffee Shops in Manila isn’t enough. Ever been dumbfounded as to what coffee bean to get when in a third wave coffee shop? Best if you know popular brewing methods (and some traditional) and what your specialty coffee store equipment has, to get the most of your cup of coffee. After all, this is what Specialty Coffee is all about. Time to be a control freak.


v60 dripper coffee brewing

Best for balancing sweetness, uniformity, and acidity, V60 Ceramic Drippers are clean and easy to use. However, specific filters must be used and these ceramic drippers need to be handled with care.

Where to get coffee that uses V60: Starbucks Reserve Coffee Manila; Duck and Buvette

BEE HOUSE Ceramic Dripper

beehouse coffee brewing

Unlike V60 Ceramic Drippers, Bee House drippers have two holes instead of one. But just like V60, its delicate and needs filters too. But quite simple to use.

Clever Dripper

clever dripper coffee brewing

Clever Drippers are less durable, and can easily overextract your coffee unless its texture is kept coarse. No pouring skills are needed and the ergonomics allows for control over steeping time.


chemex coffee brewing

Like coffee that’s less bitter and with chocolate tones? Chemex is for you, filtering out sediments and oils. It’s hourglass shaped structure is like a chemist’s best friend, producing eight smooth, chocolately cups of coffee. Coffee made with Chemex takes a bit longer than usual as Chemex-brand filters are thicker than the usual type and makes quite a concentrated cuppa. Chemex works better with coarse grind of coffee.

Where is Chemex available? Check out Refinery at Rockwell, serving Lamill Coffee beans.


third wave coffee shops manila

The hat-like dripper that Vietnamese love to use for coffee is quite tricky to use. For first timers, use coarse coffee to get it right plus condensed milk. Don’t press the hat too much, it will overextract your coffee, making it slightly acidic.

Try out the Ca Phe Sua Dua at Pho Hoa Vietnamese cuisine.


french press coffee brewing

French Press is largely available in Starbucks shops and used to be popular way back 10 years ago. While no pouring skills are required, French Press needs some ample control over steeping time, as coffee grounds can slip in the edges. Coffee produced is rich and full-bodied.

Coarse grounds of coffee from Sumatra, Mexico, and Brazil are recommended for the French Press.


Aeropress coffee brewing

Those who like fruity, acidic coffee can benefit from using Aeropress, and at the same time get a nice cup of espresso. The notes of subtle coffee grounds from Kenya, Ethiopia, Panama, Costa Rica and Papua New Guinea will be centerstage using Aeropress


siphon coffee brewing

The so called Siphon or Vacuum pot is like a brother to Chemex inside a mad scientist’s laboratory. The Siphon is the best manual brewing method available. Its ergonomics of water being pushed upward serves a function to the coffee being brewed. Sweet, chocolatey, nutty, acidic, creamy, full-bodied? Siphon can give it to you with its structure that allows you better control in parameters over a French Press with coarse grounds slipping from the edges. If you need to control the heat at 200 degrees fahrenheit, be more like Dexter’s Lab and buy a butane burner underneath it.

Best with coffee grounds from Panama, El Salvador, Colombia and Ethiopia.


coffee sock coffee brewing

Coffee Socks literally look like Socks that keep the cup quite clean. Except maintenance of the coffee sock can be a bit of a hassle, and needs to be moist to retain its quality.


espresso coffee brewing

Perhaps the most widely used method is the use of Espresso machines. Maintenance and cleanliness to these machines are keys to a good cup of coffee. Its crucial to keeping the product and process of brewing consistent. You are most likely to get an espresso from La Marzocco espresso machines.

MOKA POT (“Stove Top Espresso Maker”)

moka pot coffee brewing

It’s like a teapot, except Moka Pot is made for brewing coffee. Its an excellent way to prepare coffee, but not espresso. Fine coffee grounds are needed for the Moka Pot.


percolator coffee brewing

Percolators expose coffee grinds to higher than normal temperatures for brewing, and exposing the coffee beans with circulating coffee steam. Coffee tends to be overextracted and some like this robust taste in coffee better. These are easily confused with the Moka Pot


Coffee is soaked at room temperature overnight with Cool Brew. Regular or coarse grind of coffee is best suited for Cool Brew.

Where to Get Cool Brew? Craft Coffee Revolution at Broadway has Iced Pour Over that you can enjoy on hot and humid weather.

Have your done any of these coffee brewing methods in the comfort of your home? Share your experiences by leaving a comment!

Photo credits:
Sources: Washington Post, Stumptown Coffee Roasters